04:28 PM EDT 12/16/2014
Originally posted 04/27/2014 07:05PM
In an emotional speech at the ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon in February, Oscar winner Lupita Nyong'o credited supermodel Alek Wek's success for giving her own self-confidence a huge boost. "She was dark as night, she was on all of the runways and in every magazine and everyone was talking about how beautiful she was," Nyong'o said. "I couldn't believe that people were embracing a woman who looked so much like me as beautiful."
Top 5 Most Voted Stories
The Obamas: How We Deal with Our Own Racist Experiences
British Man Claims to Have Spent $150K+ to Look Like Kim Kardashian
Judge Exonerates 14-Year-Old Boy Who Was Executed 70 Years Ago
Drew Barrymore: Bouncing Back After Baby Is 'Not My Experience'
Stephen Collins to Katie Couric: 'I'm a Flawed Person'
Top 10 News Categories
The most buzzed about stars this minute!
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
More On PEOPLE.com
Got a News Tip?
Send it to our People.com editors!